The Best Breakfast in Every Manhattan Neighborhood
There are plenty of amazing places to eat the most important meal of the day in the city. This article was originally “The Best Places to Eat Breakfast in NYC”, but the list got out of hand, so… I’m trimming the (bacon) fat, and sharing the BEST place to get breakfast in each NYC hood. The list moves like the oft-delayed A train… uptown to downtown.
Sylvia’s is a Harlem institution. Founded by Sylvia Woods, “The Queen of Soul Food”, this neighborhood spot has been serving locals and visitors alike for over fifty years. You can’t beat the classic chicken and waffles, but the rest of the menu is full of solid breakfast classics.
328 Malcolm X Blvd, New York, NY 10027
Upper East Side: Sarabeth’s
The Upper East Side location of NYC breakfast mainstay Sarabeth’s is the perfect place to have a posh ~uptown~ breakfast… you know, if you want to feel like a proper person. The crowd is a mix of Upper East Side locals and visitors grabbing some pre-Museum Mile fuel.
1295 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10128
Upper West Side: Barney Greengrass
What else was it going to be? For over 100 years, Barney Greengrass has been the Upper West Side’s (…perhaps New York City’s…) most legendary appetizing shop. The Jewish deli has been around since 1908, serving its iconic smoked fish to hungry Upper West Siders and visitors alike. It’s the kind of place where locals have running accounts, and was a favorite of Anthony Bourdain, who called it “the quintessential New York City breakfast”. Well, there you have it!
541 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024
Midtown West: Zai Lai
Midtown West’s best breakfast is tucked into Turnstyle Underground Market, and starts slinging savory Taiwanese breakfast crepes every morning at 8am. The scallion pancake with egg is simple yet perfectly executed, and unlikely to be found elsewhere in the city. Pair it with a milk tea and you’ve guaranteed yourself a solid start to the day.
1000 8th Ave, New York, NY 10019
Midtown East: Bluestone Lane
There are plenty of Bluestone Lane cafés spread across the city, and the Midtown East location is the perfect place to nosh on some of the city’s best brekkie in the same chill feel-like-you’re-in-Melbourne atmosphere as its downtown counterparts. It’s the perfect respite from the hustle and bustle of Midtown. The menu is full of clean eats like bowls and toasts, and there’s an extensive coffee/drink menu as well, serving the city’s best turmeric latte.
805 3rd Ave, New York, NY 10022
Murray Hill/Kips Bay: Studio
The Freehand Hotel’s easy, breezy, beautiful (COVERGIRL) second floor restaurant serves the ultimate breakfast. You want eggs? They got em. Granola? Yep. Pastry basket? Pshh of course. It’s all served in a well-curated (read: v instagrammable) open space.
23 Lexington Ave, 2nd floor, New York, NY 10010
Jean Georges ultra-clean veg-driven restaurant serves a solid menu of v v healthy yet v v delish breakfast options that are as diverse as can be. There’s an extensive list of morning shakes, a fresh selection of açai and chia bowls, and an assortment of dosas… gluten free (!) savory pancakes with sambal and a runny egg. Wash it all down with a vibration*.
*basically health in liquid form
38 E 19th St, New York, NY 10003
Chelsea: Sullivan Street Bakery
If you live in New York, odds are you’ve had bread from Sullivan Street Bakery and didn’t even know it. They supply homemade bread to some of NYC’s best restaurants, but their brick and mortar in Chelsea also serves up a solid menu of Italian breakfast dishes, like al contadino: two poached eggs, toasted Truccione Sare, seasonal vegetables, herbs, lemon oil. Arrivederci… on my way over.
236 9th Ave, New York, NY 10011
Atla might be NYC’s best breakfast (shh! don’t tell the others). The more casual counterpart to Michelin-starred Cosme, chefs Enrique Olvera and Daniela Soto-Innes serve up casual Mexican dishes on an all-day menu. Allstar platos include the oh-so-delicate farmer’s omelette, flax seed chilaquiles, and split pea tlacoyo. Don’t sleep on the killer fruit plate though, and get your caffeine kick with the stellar café con leche.
372 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10012
East Village: Black Seed Bagels
This modern bagel shop is the perfect place to grab a quick on-the-g0 breakfast of a hand-rolled, wood-oven-baked bagel, topped with a schmear of cream cheese and some lox. It’s also the perfect place for a less “on-the-go” and more “cure my hangover now, please” breakfast… we’ve all been there.
176 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10009
Meatpacking: The Standard
The Standard is your best bet for an idyllic outdoor breakfast. Tuck into perfectly crispy waffles, fluffy pancakes, and if you’re feeling decadent, the lobster roll scramble (lobster and soft scrambled eggs on a toasted roll). Can’t really beat that.
848 Washington St, New York, NY 10014
Nolita: Café Habana
Café Habana sits on a Nolita’s busiest corner (probably because Café Habana is on that corner…), and has been serving up satisfying confort food for over 20 years. The restaurant was inspired by a famed Mexico City hang where Che Guevara and Fidel Castro plotted the Cuban Revolution. Come by to get your revolution on (that’s not a phrase!), and more importantly, your fill of huevos rancheros that are… you guessed it… excelente.
17 Prince St, New York, NY 10012
West Village: Buvette
If the West Village were a restaurant, it would be Buvette. Tiny, charming, and strangely full of French people. The quaint spot on Grove Street is a local fav for a reason… yes, the croque madame is amazing, as are the Belgian waffles, but it’s the cramped, charming, “so West Village but also so Paris” atmosphere that really makes this spot special.
42 Grove St, New York, NY 10014
Greenwich Village: Jack’s Wife Freda Carmine
Certain dishes from this blogger fav have become ubiquitous across our instagram feeds. The green shakshuka and rosewater waffle deserve every bit of their celebrity, more than most reality stars. Correction: more than any reality star (sorry, real housewives).
50 Carmine St, New York, NY 10014
You’ll be lucky to snag one of the few tables at this Soho spot, known for it’s ultra-fresh all-day menu of healthy fare. The Echo Taco is one of the city’s best breakfast tacos, the Sunrise Kingdom is what you wish every bodega egg sandwich could be, and the Goldilocks porridge is juuuuust right.
137 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012
Little Italy: Two Hands
Pint-sized Two Hands is one of the city’s favorite Aussie cafés, a big honor… since there are quite a few of them! Food bloggers rave about the avocado toast, topped with a poached egg for some #yolkporn action, and fashion bloggers love the clean and so-very-pretty açai bowl. You can’t go wrong with any of the dishes on the tightly curated menu.
164 Mott St, New York, NY 10013
Tribeca: Locanda Verde
New York’s best donut in a beautiful sun-drenched dining room. Shh! Say no more. Yes, the made -to-order warm donut puts Krispy Kremes everywhere to shame, but it’s not the only star on the menu. It’s seasonal, so everything changes up, but you can always get fluffy lemon ricotta pancakes and decadent french toast.
377 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013
Lower East Side: Wu’s Wonton King
Dumplings for breakfast! Hell yeah! Should I leave it at that? I think I can… Well, I’ll leave you with the order: the three-flavor wonton soup, which comes in a big steamy bowl pork, shrimp, and crab-filled dumplings floating in an ultra-flavorful broth. Bring a crew and order a big bowl to share.
165 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002
Kopitiam is the city’s destination for authentic and flavorful Malaysian food. Formerly housed in a sliver of a space on the Lower East Side with only a few stools, the café has reopened in a brand new location, complete with loads of tables to house the spread of food you’ll want to order, including but not limited to… nasi lemak (the national dish of Malaysia: coconut rice, fried anchovies, cucumber, peanuts, hard boiled egg), kaya butter toast (thick cut toast with pandan coconut jam and butter), and pan mee (hand-pulled noodles, anchovy broth, fried anchovies, wood ear mushroom, spinach, minced pork).
151 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002
Fidi: King David Tacos
Wall Street bros should know this one… the cart in Fidi’s Mannahatta Park was the city’s first breakfast taco cart, and can be easily found by the line of suits waiting to order one of four stellar tacos (bacon potato egg, refried beans potato egg, chorizo potato egg, salsa tortilla chip egg) to fuel a day of trading and yelling on the phone. That’s what they do all day, right? Idk I’m just going off of what I saw on Wolf of Wall Street.
Mannahatta Park, New York, NY 10005